We believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world.
TED is a circuit of highly popular conferences that present "Ideas Worth Spreading" —which have quickly grown to become some of the most well-known conferences around the world. TED has attracted presenters such as Bill Clinton, Jane Goodall, Larry Page, and a large handful of Nobel Prize Winners.
Many of the presentations, known as TED Talks, present ideas that are particularly valuable to entrepreneurs. I put together a collection of TED Talks that all entrepreneurs, including ecommerce store owners, should find interesting and worthwhile. Since a lot of the presenters below have written books, I have included a link to purchase. All of the money earned from Amazon's affiliate program will go to Acumen, a non-profit venture that supports entrepreneurs in developing countries.
Let us know which TED Talk you think should have made the list in the comments.
Rory Sutherland: Life Lessons from an Ad Man
Simon Sinek: How Great Leaders Inspire Action
People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it. Simon Sinek is an author, motivational speaker, and strategic communications professor at Columbia University. Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership that starts with his famous "golden circle of motivation" and the question "Why?"
If you like Simon Sinek's TED talk, you should also check out his popular blog Re:Focus which is regularly updated with fascinating articles that will help entrepreneurs build businesses. Also check out his book "Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action."
Dan Ariely: Are we in Control of our own Decisions?
Seth Godin: How to get your Ideas to Spread
Malcolm Gladwell: Choice, Happiness, and Spaghetti Sauce
Tim Harford: Trial, Error, and the God Complex
Steven Johnson: Where Good Ideas Come From
Entrepreneurs often credit their ideas to individual "Eureka!" moments. Steven Johnson doesn't think it's that simple and shows us how history tells a different story.
Steven Johnson is a best-selling author of seven books all on the intersection of science and technology woven together by personal experience. Johnson's book, "Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation" digs deep on the topic introduced in his TED Talk above. Also check out his most recent book which is only available for pre-order "Future Perfect: The Case for Progress in a Networked Age."
Cameron Herold: Let's Raise Kids to be Entrepreneurs
Dan Cobley: What Physics Taught Me About Marketing
Jason Fried: Why Work Doesn't Happen at Work
Daniel Pink: The Puzzle of Motivation
Traditional rewards aren't always as effective as we think. Sometimes using money as motivation does more harm than good - and people perform far worse when motivated with cash.
Daniel Pink is a best-selling author, journalist, and the former chief speechwriter for US Vice President Al Gore. If you enjoy Pink's TED Talk, check out two of my favorite books by Daniel Pink, "Drive: The Surprising Truth Abou What Motivates Us" and "The Adventures of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You'll Ever Need."
Richard St. John: 8 Secrets of Success
Why do people succeed? Is it because they are smart? Or are they just lucky? The answer is neither. Success Analyst, speaker, and author Richard St. John asked over 500 extraordinarily successful people what helped them succeed. He analyzed their answers and discovered eight traits successful people have in common. His book "The 8 Traits Successful People Have in Common: 8 to Be Great" goes into further detail on each of the traits that are briefly outlined in his TED Talk above.
Looking for more great inspirational content? Check out 12 Must Watch "Non-TED" Talks for Entrepreneurs.